Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Ugly p30

School was hard but an adventure all at the same time. By the end of the semester I was feeling pretty good about myself and my situation. I made the odd bit of money when the weather was warm enough. With Kim's contributions we always had what we needed. I never had to worry about that. The flat was warmer then it ever was.

Kim was permanent fixture in the house. We were a real family. Butterfly, Freedom and Uncle Kim. We would take the baby on strolls in the park and all around Boston. Sometimes Kim would rent a car and we would go to the beach or Quebec or Rodger Williams Zoo. If I could now only meet a man as good as Kim with out him being a blood relative I would be all set.

Thanksgiving can and went.

I got to know Kim's mom a little. She wanted to talk to me after the results of the DNA test came back. Kim had sent her photos of Freedom. She would say this or that reminded her of Luke. She would tell me stories of my father, things I would have never known if Kim never sought me out.

It seems Luke had commitment issues. Emma, this was Kim's Mum's name as well as Luke's mother's name, And Luke's Grandmother's name, said Luke started with the free love business when she wanted to get married after she found out she was pregnant. Luke just didn't want to be tied down. The emerging hippie scene that came about when Kim was just little. It offered him a lot of sex without strings.

An open marriage was the only thing he would offer her. This was not something Emma thought she could handle. She was a one man woman and wanted the reverse to be true too of her husband. This seemed very reasonable to me. I think part of Luke did yearn for that. The way he took care of me, the way at the end, I remember he wanted me far away from that life style.

Emma never called me Emma, she said there were too many to keep them straight, she called me Butterfly after I told her how a real Navajo Indian old woman gave me the name. She said it fit me well.

We would always end every telephone conversation with "You really need to come and visit here."

I think I just about convinced her to come over for Christmas or New Years, or did she convinced me to go there. I was never sure. Kim went and helped me get passports, just in case.

Two weeks before Christmas, is when it came, and early Christmas present from Miles. A letter from a lawyer representing Miles' mother. He was demanding I give up custody of Freedom to her and Miles, they said they wanted a paternity test, and after that they would fight for custody. It seems that Miles' mother had gotten married and looks real stable now. She even joined that hateful preacher's church. 'A good church going lady in a stable home life with a husband who are ready to raise the baby as their own'. Not to mentioned 'forced at gun point from your grandfather to sign away her rights'.

Damn, God, they go to the same church now. I wonder if my grandparents even know what she is doing? There was no gun, just Granny and a piece of paper.

"He said he would!" I screamed and cried as I threw the letter down.

"Who, what, where?" Kim inquired quickly.

Kim picked up the letter and read it.

"I didn't beat the git hard enough!" he was pretty upset as well. " He wont do it, he can't do it! They would never take a child away from her mother! They don't do that. Don't worry." He came over and wrapped his arms me. He stayed until I told him he could stop.

I wasn't as sure as he was. Before I could finish my thought a knock came on the door.

I opened it.

There was a woman in a business suit with a briefcase standing there.

"Hi, can I help you? If you are selling Jesus I have to tell you I don't need any." The only ones who dressed like that in this neighborhood are Jehovah Witnesses.

"Are you Dani Smith?" She said with a bit of disdain.

"Yeah and who the hell are you?!" I gave her the same disdain back at her.

"I am Ms Kelly from DSS. I have come to investigate a complaint about mistreatment of a baby called Freedom. It says here", and she pulls a paper from her brief case "That a black male was blowing marijuana smoke in the baby's face and the mother was filling the baby's bottle with alcoholic."

"That was Miles and his friends almost 6 months ago, I kicked him out of my house and life when I found what they had done."

"I have heard on parent accuse the other of what they do before. If this is true why didn't you contact the police or our department?" Again with the disdain.

"He told me you would take her aways from me if I said anything. He said he would have her taken away from me if I said anything or kicked him out." I was frantic. It was in my voice. Kim came up behind me. Put an arm around me.

"Ms Kelly, why don't you come in and see that Freedom is perfectly safe and happy. Now that the mother took the right steps in getting rid of the threat to her child as soon as she knew the situation existed." Kim opened the door and sounded so charming. I was so happy he was there.

"Is that a Jamaican accent?" She looked over her glasses and wrote in her book.

" No, Mame, it is a British accent. But people can confuse the two." Kim said with a smile. " I am the only black man here. And I am not Jamaican. I am 'Dani's' brother."

She again looked over her glasses and me then Kim and wrote in her book. She did not look like she believed him.

"It's true you know." I said "We both had the same father." She still looked like I was high on cocaine. "He's half white. I have the DNA paper that says we are, if you want to see it."

"It doesn't matter his relation to you, Miss Smith just if he is harming the child. Where does he sleep, by the way?"

"I sleep on the coach. My sis and the baby sleep in the bedroom, back here." Kim lead the way to the bedroom. He is smiling his big old sunshine smile. She is not charmed by it.

"So you and the baby both share the same room, Miss Smith?" She said writing more stuff down.

"Yea, she IS a baby after all, and nothing IMPROPER happens in there anyway." I am getting defensive. Kim keeps giving me the sign to keep my cool.

"She needs her own room. It is in the regulations. You are on public assistance, are you not?"


"Than they can provide a voucher for section 8 and you can get a bigger apartment with 2 bedrooms in the apt complexes they have. I hear they are nice apartments." She smiled.

"They are in the worst part of the city, I can't raise her there!" Why would she suggest even a thing, "I bet you don't live there."

'That is irrelevant, where I live." more writing "The apartments are up to regulations, unlike this place. You have to sacrifice when you are a mother." She spoke sharp at me. I was ready to kick her.

"She is very aware that she needs to sacrifice. We both do, as her only family here we raise Freedom together. That way she has the benefit of a father figure in her uncle. Thank you for telling us about the regulations we will look for a new flat right away. One with 3 bedrooms, so we can all have one. With me here, now, we can afford one in a good neighbourhood, with a good school system." Kim was taking over and leaving me behind as he showed her the crib the clean clothes, the toys, all very neat and organized.

She starts sniffing away like a bloodhound. "I don't smell any alcohol or marijuana in this room. But that doesn't mean anything, I find. The booze can be in another room, and you Miss Smith are under age to drink."

"I don't drink!"

Kim took over again. "Why don't you come to the kitchen and check for yourself?"

"Yes I did need to check the kitchen. Do you have at least a weeks worth of food?"

Kim laughed. "Sometimes I think we have a months worth, in case we get snowed in. I heard you people got quite a big blizzard a few years ago."

She was satisfied with the kitchen and the food situation, nor did she find any booze. She didn't find any on the living room either.

"Everything looks fine here, but we will do these surprise inspections from time to time as long as the baby resides with you and we find it warranted to have concerns." She said as she was leaving.

"If you turn up out of the blue and you find nothing wrong, what concerns would you have?"

"You are only 16 years old, going to college or not. Girls your age have a hard enough time taking care of themselves never mind anyone else. "

"Who decided is I am good enough?"

"I do and only I. And I can tell you right now, with an adult couple , the grandparents I believe trying to take custody, I am not trusting they will not win. You may want to think about giving the child up to the grandparents so you could get on with your life, you are so young yet and I understand you panhandle for money on the common."

"I sing and play guitar and people pay me for my musical talent, if that's what you mean, I am a musician." I was getting hot again.

"Yes, musicians don't always make the best parents, up all night, drug addicts, shady friends. You know what I mean, don't you Dani?"

Before I could answer Kim thanked her for coming and closed the door.

"She's going to take my baby way! She's going to make me sound unfit and the judge will give my child away!" I cried in Kim's arms.

The rest of the night I cried off and on. Every time I looked at Freedom I cried.

Next morning Kim made breakfast. He set me a place. I came in and sat down. On my plate was an envelope.

"It was supposed to be a surprise, but I thought it best to give this to you early. "

I look at the envelope.

"Well, open it or just get it out of the way so I can serve your eggs."

I move the envelope. He puts the eggs in my dish and I open the envelope, easing him a bit that I would not.

There were two tickets to England. I was shocked, speechless.

"Mum bought them, she wanted us over for Christmas holiday. I figured you could use some cheering up."

I put the tickets down. "It wont fix the problem, just a temporary reprieve from the fight."

"Sometimes we need at temporary reprieve to get our heads together. We can leave tomorrow morning."

"So soon."

"No time like the present. Anyhow I talked to Mum last night after you fell asleep. She agreed, it is decided, it is no longer a holiday, but we are moving back, the whole lot of us, Me, you, Freedom. It's time for a new start."

"But I just can't move there."

"And why the hell not? You have a whole bunch of stuff tying you here? Your family? Job? University? Because we have University over there, and when I said Mum's husband was well off, I meant big house in the country well off, Mum's already started making up the rooms for you and Freedom. Like the lady said it is regulation." He smiled when he said the last bit.

I threw my spoon at him. He dodge it quickly.

"But what of they don't let me?"

"Who? The tosser and his mum? By the time he realizes you are gone, he will not know where to find you. If they find you, do you realize how much money they would need to do an international custody battle with a well to do family? HUH? Baby, step Daddy has money and barristers on retainer. Now start packing light after breakfast. Just the things you could not bare to never see again. We will give the keys to the boys so they can finish our food but tell them nothing more than we are visiting your Granny for a month."

That was the best plan I heard yet. I trusted Kim, he was wiser and calmer than me. I packed. I gave Eric the keys with an open invite to use the place and eat the food while we were in Kentucky.

Everything was really tense as I made my plans, choose my things and looked around one last time. The next thing I know we are touching down in Heathrow airport.

I walked through the airport with my red converse high tops on, my skinny black pants and my trusty guitar. Kim held the most precious thing I brought with me, Freedom. A weight lifted off my shoulders immediately. It felt like freedom, it felt like death, I think it was something in between I guess. To quote Leonard Cohen. But it did.

We got a hotel room for a week to bang around London before going to Kim's Mum's place. We saw all the sights. We hung out with the punk kids at Trafalgar Square. We saw the most boring changing of the guard. We headed down to oxford street. Where I bought a Union Jack sleeveless tee shirt and a black leather jacket to complete my new look.

I sang some songs in the chilly days, I made a little bit, I wanted to bring gifts with when we went to the country house. They seemed to really like the old American songs I knew. Like this one:

Kim helped book me a a few gigs before we left, they really liked the old blues songs I knew. The dates were set up for the next year.

We finally went to the country house a week before Christmas.

Let me tell you about this country house. It had 10 bedrooms. And that wasn't counting the service quarters.

Emma was warm. Her husband, Aaron was hardly around as he worked in London and came back only for the weekends and holidays he didn't work. Kim's younger brother and sister were about the ages of mine. I was introduced to them as Kim's sister from America. They just took to me as if I was a long lost big sister. Everyone took to Freedom with a lot of love. They wanted to know if she could call them aunt and uncle, too. And Emma, oh how Emma took to Freedom.

Emma would watch Freedom so Kim and I could do our gigs in London. I felt guilty , I felt I was taking advantage. Emma said "Nonsense, child, this poppet brings life into this house. You are doing me a service to let me enjoy her like a grandmother. Kim, when you going to find a girl to marry."

It wasn't long before we were teaching Freedom to call Emma 'Gran'.

I never did get around to go to university. Kim and I played London every weekend for a while. We played blues, our own songs, Ska, reggae, what ever hit our fancy , really, and the people really seemed to enjoy it. We cut an album, small really. Small as it was it gave us exposure around Europe and we found ourselves away from home a lot more, in a lot of places I thought I would never see. Did I mention Aaron was a record producer, worked for a new mogul, called his company Virgin. He was the rock and roller of the yuppies.

We picked up musicians to play with us along the way. There is this Scott. He is always saying "Ya know Butterfly, ye are brilliant!"

It was a gig in Paris, 2 months after he kept saying I was brilliant before he asked me out to see Jim Morrison and Oscar Wilde's graves. It was fitting our first date be in a cemetery.

"How did I get so lucky, brother?" Ian said to Kim

"Let me straiten your tie, Mate." Kim said as he straightened Ian's tie and handed him his sporran.

"Seriously, what great thing did I ever do to deserve this? I have been asking myself that all week." Ian nervously filtered around trying to attach all the accents you attach to the traditional dress Scott outfit.

"At least you know the right thing to say to your soon to be brother-in-law, otherwise I would have to knock you to the curb before you could marry my sister."

Ian looked at Kim like a deer caught in headlights.

"Mate, you will have to be tougher than that to be her husband. Just don't mess it up. I will always be around."

Ian smiled, "Right you are," He looks int he mirror and around at the very old Scottish church. "I am not good enough for her." He started for the door.

Kim stood in his way "Don't be a git and get down that isle, and just don;t brake her heart. She loves you."

Ian smiled nodded and headed with Kim, in full Scottish garb, down the isle were they stood waiting for the bride.

I am about to step on stage, the nerves always hit. Then I hear my husband say:

"Welcome Ladies and Gentleman. May I introduce to you, Butterfly!"

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Ugly p 29

Weeks passed, Miles didn't return. Strange how you half want them to. Just to prove to yourself they loved you somewhere deep in side. I became sometimes melancholy about the whole thing. I had a child with him. It hurt more to think he never cared about either of us. So many thoughts can go through your head. When Kim was an idea. The idea of one of my kind, a new man, a new hope of moving forward made it so easy to kick him away to make room for something better, something new. But it turned out I was jumping from wild horse to thin air. Now I feel like I am hitting the ground. Hard. Very hard.

I tried not to let it show too much around Kim.

"Ya know, Emma, when ever we brake up with someone good or bad for us it hurts just the same. If they are bad for us, we have the deadly 'whit ifs' and we ask why we weren't good enough to make them right. If they are good we wonder why we weren't better to keep them. It's bollocks either way, luv." Kim said over the breakfast table, which for us, breakfast is at noon. But eggs and chips it is.

"I don't know why you are bring this up, I am over that loser." I lied as I cleared the table.

"That tosser's Freedoms biological father. That leaves a connection, tis harder to break. "

He was right.

"Another tosser will come down the bus route any time here. The world is full of them. Me Gran always told my baby sister 'there is always enough time to wait for the right man, but it is always too soon to settle for the wrong one'."

"Your Gran is wise."

Days passed and I kept playing the words of Kim's grand over in my head over and over. Even when singing too many Janis Joplin songs about men leaving.

Kim made sure I was registers for collage. He made sure I went. He said he would watch Freedom while I took classes.

Eric is getting scarcer nowadays. The boys are staring to get sick, whispers of plague that hits only gay men. The boys who come from New York with the Broadway plays to Boston, some of them have spots on their bodies, get very skinny, and now it starts to spread here. Eric spends time taking care of the boys believing that is Indian magic will spare him.

I saw him in the park on the way back to the flat that afternoon.

"Whoa Eric, have you gained 50 pounds?"

"Blunt as always, sweetheart. That is why I love you."

He looks so drawn. He is not his chipper self.

"what's wrong? Where's me bouncy Tiger?"

"I went to three funerals this week. The boys are dying. They get really skinny, Auschwitz skinny ,before dying. I will have a buffer when my time comes. I have an excuse to eat all the ice cream I want." He is holding back so many tears, I think he is all cried out. It breaks my heart. I start crying. " Ronald Rayguns is office
and his press secretary is joking about it. The gay disease. The preachers use it to preach hate. Don't they know?"

"Don't they know what?" I go to hug him.

He puts up his hands to stop me. "What effects us, effects them. We are humans. We are all humans. Though I wonder about these hate stirrers." He shakes his head." They are not human any more."

I go to hug him again. Again he refuses.

"I can't chance it, not with you and little Freedom. Not with you. Don't they know how many married men come to the truck stops. How many closeted men out there with families. And a woman married to a gay man, you don;t think she wont go get something on the side too? HA! it is only a matter of time before they are all dying too. Baby stay celibate, don't touch anyone, don't use public restrooms, don't get blood, it is tainted, no-one is safe. No-ONE."

My heart is breaking for him. My heart is breaking and he is not there , nothing much behind the eyes, like a soldier in war who has seen too many dead bodies. I don't know what to do.

The walk home was long. I stopped to use the public restroom, freaked out about everything Eric said, what if could be spread this way. I hoovered over the seat. I see the writing on the wall "If AIDS is god's curse on gay men, then lesbians must be the chosen people."

I open the door to to the old Victorian, grab the mail, head upstairs to my flat.

"Hey I'm home!"

I toss the mail on the coffee table. Kim comes out holding Freedom, freshly washed. "Look who's home from school? Tis right, ya mum."

I take Freedom from hm and start giving her butterfly kisses all over her face she giggles little baby girl giggles. "Mail's on the table. what's for lunch?"

Kim didn't answer back, usually I get some sort of answer I have no clue what it is. A curry this a curry that a vandeloo. But silence.

I dress Freedom and put her in her crib with her favorite toys. she makes cooing baby happy noises.

I walk into the living room.

Kim is holding an envelope. "This is it."

"So what are you going to do? This is what you wanted."

"If I don't open it , everything can stay the same. If I open it everything might change."

"No matter what it says, Kimble, we will be friends. That wont change."

"Oh child, I have heard that too many times to ever believe that again."

"I never said it to you." Now I am a little hurt.

"Everything changes, everything. But blood is stronger than water, enit what they say? Nothing can brake that bond."

"It is what you came and sought me out for. Open the damn thing."

He just stares at it for a few more moments.

I grab it from him. "In for a penny, in for a pound. I fear no piece of paper."

I open it quick and look at the many numbers and words that make little scene to me.

Kim smiles like the sun.

"I don't see what si so funny, no-one but a DNA scientist could read this gobbly gook."

HE starts laughing at the. Actually laughed at me.

"I don't know what is so funny! Your MUM should get her money back."

"She don't need to, sis." He gets up and hugs me, "You were looking at the wrong side of the paper. You made me read it first anyway. I see you will definitely be a hand full. "

He put me down. I look on the other side. The results are 99.75 that we shared the same father.

Luke was my father. Kim is my brother.And god sometimes answers prayers.

ugly p28


Kim introduced me fully into Ska.

What I just took as a fun beat from some reggae I found was it's own style. Over the last 6 weeks we got to know east other much better. We became like brother and sister. We learned from each other. I taught him the downs of the blues and he brought me up with ska. Between the two of us Freedom heard all sorts of music and had many smiles and laughter to find her peace with.

We often played together in the park, making more than I did alone even after splitting it. He always gave me extra, he said there were two of us and one of him, so I should get more to provide for my baby.

The days seem to stop when first I found him and I was looking for him again. But the days have flown by since he found me. I have come to know him enough that I do trust him to sleep over my flat, much less expensive then the hotel. It is nice to have about the flat again. Listen to me, even borrowing from his talk, he has become so much a part of me. He refuses to let me carry the laundry to the matt. He makes food for us at times. He doesn't invite his friends over. He says "When you have children, you have to take care who to bring into your child's life, you never know who will take advantage. Need to surround children with the best of who you know, so they will strive to be like those you love and admire."

Told him I learned my lesson well. But I never really elaborated. I wanted to forget.

He would sleep on the couch, it was close to the door. I slept well with him there, it was like I had a giant lion guarding the door of the keep, for the two princess inside were precious things who deserved to be guarded by such a powerful beast. He made me feel that way. As if I were special.

Half the time I wished the DNA test comes back as if we were family, half that we were not so I could have him as my man. But always he treated me and Freedom with respect. It was like living with one of the boys.

One night, after coming home from the club we were winding down for the night. Kim went to make some food for us all. A knock came on the door. I went and opened it Miles. Standing there. Oh Crap.

"Hey babe, going to invite me in?"


He pushed in anyway.

"You know what ever you got is crap. My mother has a lawyer now. Say goodbye to your brat enjoy the time left. Unless you want to rethink your position on me, I can live here with you while I go to school, that way you can still see the kid. But she will still legally be mine.I guess at that point you will be leaching off me in my place. Once I have custody I can get assistance, just like your lazy ass. And you can start paying me child support, you can start now. "

At this point he had me against the wall One arm between me and the kitchen the other trying to rifle through my clothes looking for money.

"Oi! MATE, what you think ya doing?!" Kim yelled as he ran up to Miles and me.

"Who the hell are you?!" Miles acted so indignant. "You take up with a nigger right after I leave? So THIS is why you wanted me out of the house." He scream back at me like a lover who just found out there was another.

"Out!" in a booming voice Kim pulled him away from me. Kim was slightly taller than Miles but as far as bulk went, the lion won out, Miles looked like a boy compared to Kim.

"Hey, I know you are new to this bitch, but this is my family you are muscling in on. Be a man and walk away." Miles said in that tone that if you didn't agree with him you were not being an adult. But now he is doing it to someone who is older then both of us.

"Bitch, Nigger, man do you know how to talk people." Kim laughed. And pushed Miles away, which made him fall the few steps to the landing and land against the wall. the same wall he landed on when I kicked him months earlier. 'Look mate, you made me laughter, I will give you to the count of three."

"To leave, I get empty threats. It wont work here."

"No empty threat mate, it is just the head start I am giving you before I beat your raciest ass." Kim was still smiling and laughing. "ONE"

"You don't know the games she plays, man" Miles is still not moving.


"BUT I am the FATHER!"


Before he got the whole word out Miles started down the stairs.

Kim ran after. He caught him at the end of the stairs "I don't know what you are, tosser, but I know you are no father!"HE has him by his shirt with both hands.

"You are just upset I used the word nigger. Hey it's not really like that. I was just thrown by you banging my old lady. Hey in another circumstances we could be friends. Let me buy you a a beer at the bar."

"You just don't get it, tosser. I am 'ta bout ta beat you so you will never even think about going near my sister or niece again. DO YOU even know 'er name, tosser? " I had never thought Kim could get so angry.

"Her name is Dani!" Miles said nervously.

"AHT, wrong answer. I meant my niece not my sister, and you didn't even get that name right."

Miles grabs a knife out of his pocket, Kim hold him away from him.

"Not so tough now! I learned to fight in Kentucky, Limey!"

Kim quickly head butts Miles. Miles drops the knife and falls back.

"Sorry, Yank, I learned to fight in the pubs during football night." Kim Smiled and moved Miles out side, where he literally kicked him down the street. I don't know what happened next, but I never saw Miles again that year. Can't really remember how much longer it was before I had to deal with that fool again.

Kim came back about a half hour later.

He had a bit of blood on him. I cleaned him up.

"Ya know sis, you know how to pick 'em. I can see I 'ave my work cut out for me." He wasn't smiling. I stopped. I looked at him.

He grabbed me put me in a head lock, gives me a nudgy. "And I wouldn't have it any other way, my other little sister is too proper, never any excitement, no need for a big brother." Now he is smiling. I get up and finish wash off the blood, but I find no cuts.

I think that was the moment I realized I was hoping to God he was my brother. Silently tears ran down my cheeks.

musical biscuit


Ska (pronounced /ˈskɑː/, Jamaican [skja]) is a music genre that originated in Jamaica in the late 1950s, and was the precursor to rocksteady and reggae.[1] Ska combined elements of Caribbean mento and calypso with American jazz and rhythm and blues. It is characterized by a walking bass line accented with rhythms on the offbeat.

Music historians typically divide the history of ska into three periods: the original Jamaican scene of the 1960s (First Wave), the English 2 Tone ska revival of the late 1970s (Second Wave) and the third wave ska movement, which started in the 1980s (Third Wave).

I can think of soemthing else ,other than rowing those rude boys are doing.

Rude boy, rudeboy, rudie, rudi or rudy were common terms for juvenile delinquents and criminals in 1960s Jamaica, and have since been used in other contexts.[1][2] During the late-1970s 2 Tone ska revival in England, the terms rude boy, rude girl and other variations were often used to describe fans of that genre, and this new definition continued to be used in the third wave ska subculture. In the United Kingdom in the 2000s, the terms rude boy and rude girl have become slang which mainly refer to people (largely youths) who are involved in street culture, similar to Gangsta or Badman.


The first rude boys in the 1960s were associated with the poorer sections of Kingston, Jamaica, where ska, then rocksteady were the most popular forms of music. They dressed in the latest fashions at dancehalls and on the streets. Many of these rude boys started wearing sharp suits, thin ties, and pork pie or Trilby hats; inspired by United States gangster movies, jazz musicians and soul music artists. In that time period, disaffected unemployed Jamaican youths sometimes found temporary employment from sound system operators to disrupt competitors' dances (leading to the term dancehall crasher). This — and other street violence — became an integral part of the rude boy lifestyle, and gave rise to a culture of political gang violence in Jamaica. As the Jamaican diaspora grew in the United Kingdom during the 1960s, rude boy music and fashion, as well as the gang mentality, became a strong influence on the skinhead subculture

Skinheads, originally, come out of the same *working class* culture
as ska. Just look at early Sixties pictures of Bob Marley, Peter Tosh
and Bunny Wailer -- they have no hair! Skinhead culture spread more
widely in the late Sixties as more and more Jamaicans went to the UK
and influenced the White youth culture there. These old UK bald-heads
were rude boys. Yesterday's and today's skinhead fashion has a legacy
from Black Jamaica. Since the first skinheads were trying to look like
shave-head rude boys, it makes all those Nazi skinhead types seem pretty
ignorant, eh? It's a good thing they are in the minority.

Saturday, 27 June 2009

Ugly p 27

It has been 2 weeks since I threw out Miles. It is all a blur really. A lot of the boys in my apartment. They take turns watching me and Freedom. And Watching Freedom so I can play in the part or the club. A lot of times we take her with us and have her enjoy the sun and music.

I hadn't seen or heard Oldest Father or Kim since that night. Maybe they were both in my imagination or some weird brain tumor like in a soap opera.

It is a beautiful late summer day in Boston. Lots of tourist in Boston in summer. They are from small towns where people don't play in the park for some spare change, they are either really cheap or really gergious. I sing a lot of old blues songs, or 1960's folk rock. It is popular. But the songs are pretty depressing. Love lost and such. A lot of Janis. Very popular with the women.

Eric today is holding Freedom as I play and sing. He is on the bench, has her in a carriage, ,this makes it look like tourist enjoying my music, more people come that way.

I look down to figure out my next selection.

"Why don't you sing that poppet something more fitting for childhood?" I hear money drop in my case with the request.

I look up.I look at Eric. He is smiling. "I guess this one was real." He says with a snicker.

"One of the boys?" I asked him quietly.

"Not one of my kind, darling, I do believe he is one of yours." Eric is still smiling at the tall man with long dreadlocks standing in front of me.

"Well, Emma, are you going to play something fitting for your daughter? I paid my money. Play my request, Luv." He said with a British accent. But he always had one.

"Hey, what did you call me?" Now I am curious, I had been chassing his ghost for so long, well it seemed so long. But how did he know that name.

"Emma. A good English name." He smiles, the one that files the whole world.

"Only one person called me that."

"Must have been the one who told me your name, then."

I started singing so I could digest this. Luke is dead. Luck called me Emma. And Kim is standing right in front of me. In all of my thoughts the best I could sing was this.

" Ha. An old girl's song. You can do better than that. She's your daughter after all." He said with a challenging look on his face.

I sit down. How does he know she's mine?

"How do you know she's not his? " I motion to Eric. "He's holding her."

"Because ta queen would have to change sex and have her himself, if EVER he was to have a baby, Duck are just not his bag, baby."

Well he is observant. I will give him that. I start singing. More and more people come as I do. I sing to Freedom. She smile's at me.

"Ah, now that is better. Her smile is just like her Ma's How could she be anyone else's child."

"Answers. NOW. Kim."

Now it was his turn to be shocked a bit.

"What, you think you were the only one with mystical powers? I thought I would open a juju shop in Salem. 'Madame Butterfly'" I said smiling at him, it was the only thing I had, I needed to use it before he introduced himself.

"So ya Ma told ya I was coming?"

"No, we don't talk." The night at the ER, I think back, 'Some guy was looking for you' maybe I should have called her back to talk a bit the next day. Damn.

"Oh, ta shame. A child should always talk to their Ma."

Who is he to say. Now I am getting pissy. "Not of they never acted like one and gave you up and than denied you to your siblings."

He has his hands up now. "Whoa, too much anger, little one. I came to find you, not talk about ya ma."

"Why did you come here, to find me, calling me a name that no-one has called me since I was about 4? Who told you the name?"

"Ma Da told me about you, gave me photos when he visitied me and Ma. Gave us money when he could. Gave me photos of you and him, said I had a sister."

"Well it ain't me, babe. I have no father."

Kim takes an envelope out of his bag. Opens it and hands the photos to me. They are of me and Oldest Father. There is one of a little boy and a woman and oldest father.

"Ah, that one's me and me ma and me da." He is smiling at these old photos.

"So you are Luke's son?" I was astonished.

No wonder I was so attracted to him, so drawn to him. There must be a piece of oldest father in his dark body that called to me.

" I heard he died back when I was abut 6. I'm sorry." I said trying to look distrote.

"That was a long time ago. I had hoped to meet you there. But I as told you were living with your grandparents by than."

"What did he die of." OH, that was insensitive. It was just that I wanted to know since the phone call with Bobbie that night. Again another thing I meant to talk to her about.

" It 'twas the 60's. An OD just like most of the ones who died. I spent a lota nights what ifing when I was younger. But by the time Ma married and me step Da became a Da to me and they had their own, I stopped.. He always said he was your Da." He looked at Freedom, touched her head. "He would have loved this little one."

"He was a good guy, from what I remember. Always acted like as father to me, but truth be told my mother has no clue who fathered me, too many orgies around the time I was conceived. Too many men. He was just one who stuck around." I look at him

"Your Ma told me something similar, less tarty version, but still insisted you were not my sister."

"Sorry, I am not your sister, but that means we can date. "

He looked at me with a bit of ick on his face.

"Or not if I am that repulsive." I started picking at my guitar again hoping to end that awkward moment.

"No, not at all, you are a lovely lass, a bit young for me, but lovely."

"I have a kid, I get that, too much baggage."

"No, I have been told since I was 6 years old, that I have a sister. And she is you. And you still might be, we just don't know. Da was citrine, said you had his grands nose and hands."

"You do realize we are not talking 3 men here, that we are talking dozens upon dozens of men?"

"Oh, girlfriend, your mom got her freak on!" Eric chimed in, loving this, he really never knew this about me.. He covers Freedom's ears "But, I don't think baby Free should hear the slutty details about her grandmother.

Kim looked half amused at Eric. "It just means it is 1 in 12 or 1 in 14 chance, but the chance is there. My Da, my step Da, has a bit of money, did well for 'im self back home in England. My Ma said she would pay for the test. We can know for sure. It is all I ask of you, than I will leave ya if ya want either way. I just want to know."

"Blood tests are crap, so we might have the same blood type, half the guys probably did."

"DNA, Luv. They can tell if we had the same Da pretty accurately. Will ya? "

I looked around. He seemed so real, all he asked is if I was his sister. It would be nice to know.

" How painful is this test?" I asked.

"Just some blood, not painful at all, the wait of a few months is the more painful than the blood that will be drawn. Then we can know if this little poppet has an Uncle Kim from England." He smiled as he played with Freedom's hand. " Wouldn't you like that, little one? " He bends back up and looks at me. "And wouldn't it be nice to have big brother? We can never have too many family." He smiled at me.

A brother. A brother who knows about me and likes me and wants to be my brother. A musical brother. A brother that looks like a lion and sings like Bob Marley and has a Brutish accent. A Brother.

"O.k., what do I have to loose."

"Ta, than it is done, we can go right now." He wraps his arms around me and hugs like he will never let go.

I had pictured my first meeting of Kim to end up in his arms, not quite like this though.

I sat own and played an old Bob Dylan tune. Kim got his steel Drum and played alone. I know the meaning was slightly diffrent, but the love was still there.

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Ugly p 26

a person who studies or collects moths and butterflies.

I hop up the stairs. All happy and all. Kim, his name is Kim.

I open the door, the cloud of smoke comes out to choke me. I cough. I look inside, and see the most horrible sight.

"What is that!" I scream as I point to the frame on the wall.

"My mother sent it, she thought the baby would like it." Miles said with a smile.

"Why, the hell would I like it! Or Freedom for that matter! It is horrid!" I replied.

"She is a lepidopterist, she collects butterflies. I think they are beautiful.She really respects their beauty. I thought you would get that?"

"And than she puts a pin through them, she is sick! Why would I like that?"

"Hey I pinned you! You seemed to like it." He said with a smile and a slap to my ass.

I shuttered and went to see Freedom.

He was over her in her crib blowing pot smoke in her face.

"What the fuck are you doing?! You are not suppose to be in here! This is a pot free zone! You know that!" I look at him with daggers in my eyes. I go to grab Freedom.

"I wasn't hurtin' her. She was crying. We got her to stop, she's happy now. You know you can be such a bitch some times Dani, loosen up." Davey replied as if I caught him taking a cookie, not getting my daughter high.

Before I could reply I I noticed the baby bottle not filled with my milk but beer.

"You know you shouldn't yell around the baby like that, you really are not the best mother."

I take the bottle, not the baby. I get in Davey's face, I had to stand on tip toes. "HOW MUCH DID YOU GIVE HER! How much asshole? Do I need to take her to the hospital?"

HE takes me by the shoulders and pushes me onto the bed. "I said calm down, bitch. You know you really are an irrational little girl, not the type to be able to care for a baby, running around all night, leaving her alone. You are not taking her anywhere. They will just take her away from an unfit mother like you if you do."

With that Davey left to go join Miles in the living room. Laughing all the way. I could hear him say "Man you got to put a leash on that bitch of yours, and a muzzle, too. I don't know how you stand it."

I looked at the bottle, it was only about an eighth drunken. I think she will be o.k. I opened the window. Got her a bottle of milk from the fridge. I hoped it would dealt the alcohol and pot. I went back in the kitchen, found myself a great big old knife. I will show him 'irrational bitch'.

I ran into the living room knife in one hand, beer baby bottle in the other.
"Miles, dear, did you have anything to do with this, or do I just kill Davey?"

"She's crazy man!" Dave said as he moved away from me into a corner.

"That's right, funny man, if I am going to be a crazy bitch, I will eat your heart while I am doing it. You know it is a Voodoo thing, I learned about that from the blues man who taught me to play guitar." I said moving closer to the weaving Davey trying to find a way around me without getting cut.

Miles is laughing his butt off on the couch while I am ready to cut his best pot head friend.

Dave pushes by me and runs to the door. I follow. "Don't you ever come back, or your heart is mine!" I yelled after him.

Miles is now behind me. "That was fuckin' great, babe, he bought it hook line and sinker. You will have to do something else crazy next week to freak him out." He's still laughing.

"You too." I say very plainly.

"what, babe? Oh you are just riled up, why don't you calm down and make us something to eat. You will feel better." He is still smiling. He thinks it's a joke, he thinks I am a joke, he doesn't even think of Freedom. She is nothing but something for him to get high and laugh at.

"G-E-T O-U-T!"

He stops laughing. Now we are reversed. He is in front of the open door. I am near the wall. I put down the baby bottle full of beer.

"Get ouuuuuuuuuuch." He threw me up against the wall. His normally calm face is in mine now.

"You know I will take the baby away from you. You are nuts. Me and my mother . Against an unstable 16 year old girl. What judge wouldn't choose us. You have over stepped your bounds here, why don't you calm down. I will go get the brat and we will sit and watch t.v.." He let me down and to a step towards the baby's room.

"NOT MY DAUGHTER!" heard the familiar voice come from the open door. Next thing I knew Miles flew backwards down the 4 stairs to the landing and against the wall. I was in the door way. Oldest father.

I heard Eric and the boys down stairs "Butterfly, are you o.k.?"

"You got lucky, Dani. You were lucky to have me!" Miles screamed.

"NO, You got lucky and your luck just ran out!"

"She's mine. I will change her name. You'll never see her again and you will never even know her name. You are so fucked, bitch!" he snarled with a grin on his face.

I was calm and smiling. "I don't think so, you see Granny gave me only one gift. Don't you remember that paper you and your mom signed when I was pregnant?" I gave him a moment "You remember before I got sent away... The one where you both signed away any rights to MY daughter? And don't even think about braking into the apartment to find it. It's not here. "

I tuned and grabed the butterflies pinned in a frame and threw it at him.It cut him on the forehead. Blood dropping down. "Give your mother my regards."

I was about to slam the door when he said "But I'm the FATHER!? I have rights!"

"I don't know what you are, but you are no father. Luke, have fun beating him."

I slammed the door, but looked out the peep hole to see how badly Luke would hit Miles.

The though came to me, I am alone. I am truly alone. As I put my back to the door. A knock.

I turned and opened the door, "Daddy!"

There stood Eric and the boys, some of the boys were escorting Miles out. Listening to gay men showering threats at Miles was mildly amusing.

"Daddy, honey I ain't your Daddy and I never will be any woman's. Are you o.k?! And who is Luke?" Eric said very hurriedly.

"Luke, he's the older guy who pulled Miles off me. Where did he go?"

" Luke, Kim, all these imaginary men, girl I wish I had your imagination. How hard did he hit you, has he been hitting you in the head this week?" Eric said as he came in.

"No he only shoved me against the wall today. Really, the older guy? Please?" Now I am worried why I am seeing people who are not there.

Eric asked what happened. I explained, he rushed into see Freedom. He got some water to give to her. He convinced me to take her to the ER, though I feared someone would take her away.

At at ER waiting room I asked "Eric, why were you at my house tonight?"

"You were so out of it tonight, I just wanted to make sure you got him alright. Looks like you know how to take care of business. I didn't think you kick like that. When I said you should kick him out, I didn't mean literally. Ha ha." Eric kept the puns up for a while.

"Hey, Butterfly girl, I am glad you finally came to your senses I can finally tell Sandra and Carol it is o.k. to come visit again."

"Yeah, you cannnnn. " I stopped in my tracks "What do you mean? How do you know them?" Now I was studding him closely.

"Honey, we all know each other, us endanger species. They asked me to keep an eye on you." Now he was smiling. " I am so relieved I don;t have to keep that secret any more."

I signed, what are you going to do. So I cuddled int his armpit/ Hey he always smells good.

"Hey, Eric, can you watch Freedom I need to use the pay phone.".

He nodded and got up routed around in my coat for some dimes. I took out my little purple book. Looked up the number and dialed.

"Hey, is my Mot... Is Bobbie there?"

It was only 10pm over there but the guy on the phone acted like it was 1 am.

"Hi, Bobbie, it's me Danni. "

"How are you? How is the baby?"

I looked around the ER. "Fine, we are fine. What I really called you for was to know if you kept up with Luke?"

"Luke who, honey?"

"Luke they guy who took me fishing when I was little. The guy who held me at Woodstock when you came back. You know they guy you loved."

"Oh. Him. I haven't thought about him in years. Until recently. You are the second person who brought him up in a month's time. Why do you want to know about him?"

"I thought I saw him tonight."

"I don't think so dear."

"What make you so sure."

"He's dead. He died about 2 years after you left."

"Are you sure?" I was shocked.

"I did go to his funeral. We all did."

"I didn't, why didn't I? Why didn't you tell me?"

"I didn't think you would remember him."

"Well I did."

"I'm sorry, if I knew he meant so much. But that is a long time ago."

I hear Freedom's name called.

" I have to go."

"Wait, some guy a few years older than you is looking for you, I sent him your way."

They call her name again.

"I really got to go, bye."

I hung up the phone.

Eric went with Freedom and me into the ER. All those questions. He answered most of them. He explained that I was a victom of domestic violence. That I finally got the strength to end it when Miles drugged my baby. that I had asked Eric and the boys for back up. That I was NEVER going to let the abuser back near the baby or me again. I just kept nodding and sobbing. The nurse was convinced. They gave Freedom some test, for alcohol poisoning and such. They wanted to make sure she didn't; get too much into her system. It seems she barley had any in her. The nurse believes she must have thrown up most of whatever she drank. Thank God.

They checked out me. Bruises were starting to show on my torso from being pushed and shaved, they were convinced solidly of Eric's story. He contently left out the 16 year old part and the club singer.

"Nurse Nancy, Danni here is a young mother who trusted the wrong guy. He threatened to take the baby if she brought her here. You can see that she cared more about her baby than the idea she would be taken away. If this is reported she might find that threat a reality. Is there anything we can do?" He winked at her.

"She's fine. I can see she is a good mother. I see so many babies brought here by grandmothers and police." She looked at me now, " I hope you learned your leson and are more careful who you let around your baby and you."

"Yes. Mame."

She slipped pieces of paper from Freedoms and mine file to Eric.

"You better leave now, Quickly." She said over her glasses. "And keep up with the water and breast milk, she should be fine.

We exited stage right, right quick.

As soon as we were out of there I said. "That was sure lucky to get an understanding nurse."

"You make your own luck. And it helps if you stack the deck." Eric said.

"What do you mean?"

"I told you we all know each other. She's one of the endangered." He smiled.

He walked me home and helped me clean the sheets of the beds. We found where Freedom threw up the beer. He stayed with me that night. HE slept in my bed. I never felt so safe with a man in my bed. And he smelt damn good.

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Ugly p25

One of my kind. What a concept.

I made a lot of money that day.

Didn't see the man again that day.

I went home after my happy day in the park.

I am not a lone.

This concept, not alone, was foreign to me. I had accepted I was the only one of my kind so long ago, I don't know when it was.

I got home.Miles was on the coach. Freedom was in her room. She is always in the bedroom when I come home.

I went to pick her up.

"Damn, Miles, she has a full diaper again?! Do you ever change her or wait for me to come home? "

"She must have just filled it baby, you know she's a little poop machine."

I change her. She has a rash that has not gone away in weeks.I give her a bath. I give her a bath every day. It eases the pain from the rash. I don't believe he changes her. I don't believe he touches her. But I don't want to believe her father would not take care of her.

I feed Freedom. She smiles at me. I pump milk at the same time. I have a gig in a few hours at the club. I am engorged from the 4 hours I was out with her. She is very hungry. She always is when I come home.

Tonight Eric is brings a bunch of his boys to fill the audience and try to create buzz about me. I had been handing out leaflets at the park. I was half hoping one would find it's way to him. Him, I don't know his name. His face. It is all I have.

I finish up with Freedom. I dress her and bring her into the kitchen to make supper before I leave. She loves to watch me cook. I tell her everything I am doing. Miles says it is stupid to think she could understand what I said,. He says she is like a puppy, no ability to understand. I know he is wrong. I just don't get why after 6 weeks he doesn't seem to feel a connection to his daughter. She ,must be so bored left here with him. Maybe I can find a way to have some of the boys help watch her while I play.

Fantasies are going threw my head of the man showing up at the gig. Then 17 different scenarios ensue, until Miles brakes the spell. "Shouldn't you get ready for the gig?"

"Yeah you going to be o.k. with Freedom?"

"Yeah, my boys are coming over. Did you make enough food for everyone, we get hungry, you got the chips for me?"

"I didn't have enough food stamps, they have to last me more weeks." I look away from him so he can't see my expression.

"Come on baby, you can't eat that much, you girls eat like birds. Don't be selfish, what are we suppose to do,starve?"

"I am feeding a baby!"

"Yeah and your milk bags give her food for free, see you don't need all the food stamps."

"What I eat,she eats, I need to eat healthy."

"Don;t be silly, babies in Africa hang of their mother's tit and they have almost no food, they still survive. What kind of woman lets her man starve as she eats all the food, a pig, that's what."

I don't want to get him mad before I leave him with Freedom alone. I grab the $20 I had left for food and hand him the food stamps. "That's all I have, there is no more until next month. Don't spend it all." I smile at him.

"That's better, baby. But I don't know if it will feed my buddies too, do you have any money from today."

"I already gave it to you." I said, turned from him again. " Have you looked for a job today?"

"Don't nag me, I can't deal with the stress. For that I wont look tomorrow. You have to learn to stop nagging!" it that he acted all indingnat and walked back into the living room.

I breath out. I feed Freedom one more time. As she starts to fall asleep her little hand holding my breasts I place her gently into her crib, and kiss her goodnight.

"I'm leaving now. See you after the gig. Freedom should be asleep a while. She wouldn't be much trouble." I say as I start leaving out the door. I notice his buddies have already started arrive. "Hey Dave."

"Hey Danni, good luck or brake a leg or what ever you say. What's for supper?"

"Lasagna's in the fridge."

"Cool, did you put sausage in it this time?"

"Nope, still vegetarian, but you are welcome to bring you make next time."

I left. They never get the hint. I started telling them I was vegetarian when I realized they ate all my meat the first night they came over. It was just easier that way, and cheaper. It never bothered me not to eat it around them.

The walk to the T station and to the club seemed to fade into a world of what ifs. I still had dreams of 'him' showing up. I came up with all sorts of fanciful names that might be his. Before I knew it I was at the club. Went in the back door.

In all my dreamy state, I forgot my make up, other than some lipstick , red of course and black eyeliner. My cover up pancake makeup was still at home. I was kind of lost.

I started walking out towards the stage. Eric and his boys were coming the other way.

"Hey false face." He said as he hugged me. "Where is your mask?"

"I thought people know me well enough now to handle some truth." I said saving the real reason.

"You forgot it at home, didn't ya?" He said laughing. "It's o.k, BUTTERFLY, it suits you to be yourself. That way your own kind can spot you easier." He said with a smile. He leaned over and kissed me on the cheek, "We'll be yelling the on floor. Play something good for us. Something I never heard you play before."

He and the crew turned to leave.

"Oh just make it easy for me, " I yelled after him. I could hear him laugh after they were out of sight.

I stepped on stage.

"Hi, I'm Papillion. Or Butterfly if you will." There was a great cheer from the boys. Oh I could hear Eric loudest of all. " I wanted to play some songs for you. I'll star with some I wrote a few months ago. "

I started out with three New wave type music I had written.

They went over well.

" So now I would like to play a song, something my friend, Eric, has never heard me play before. This is an old song. It was written by a man who I was born on his birthday, Bob Dylan."

It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)
Darkness at the break of noon
Shadows even the silver spoon
The handmade blade, the child's balloon
Eclipses both the sun and moon
To understand you know too soon
There is no sense in trying.

Pointed threats, they bluff with scorn
Suicide remarks are torn
From the fool's gold mouthpiece
The hollow horn plays wasted words
Proves to warn
That he not busy being born
Is busy dying.

Temptation's page flies out the door
You follow, find yourself at war
Watch waterfalls of pity roar
You feel to moan but unlike before
You discover
That you'd just be
One more person crying.

So don't fear if you hear
A foreign sound to your ear
It's alright, Ma, I'm only sighing.

As some warn victory, some downfall
Private reasons great or small
Can be seen in the eyes of those that call
To make all that should be killed to crawl
While others say don't hate nothing at all
Except hatred.

Disillusioned words like bullets bark
As human gods aim for their mark
Made everything from toy guns that spark
To flesh-colored Christs that glow in the dark
It's easy to see without looking too far
That not much
Is really sacred.

While preachers preach of evil fates
Teachers teach that knowledge waits
Can lead to hundred-dollar plates
Goodness hides behind its gates
But even the president of the United States
Sometimes must have
To stand naked.

An' though the rules of the road have been lodged
It's only people's games that you got to dodge
And it's alright, Ma, I can make it.

Advertising signs that con you
Into thinking you're the one
That can do what's never been done
That can win what's never been won
Meantime life outside goes on
All around you.

You lose yourself, you reappear
You suddenly find you got nothing to fear
Alone you stand with nobody near
When a trembling distant voice, unclear
Startles your sleeping ears to hear
That somebody thinks
They really found you.

A question in your nerves is lit
Yet you know there is no answer fit to satisfy
Insure you not to quit
To keep it in your mind and not fergit
That it is not he or she or them or it
That you belong to.

Although the masters make the rules
For the wise men and the fools
I got nothing, Ma, to live up to.

For them that must obey authority
That they do not respect in any degree
Who despise their jobs, their destinies
Speak jealously of them that are free
Cultivate their flowers to be
Nothing more than something
They invest in.

While some on principles baptized
To strict party platform ties
Social clubs in drag disguise
Outsiders they can freely criticize
Tell nothing except who to idolize
And then say God bless him.

While one who sings with his tongue on fire
Gargles in the rat race choir
Bent out of shape from society's pliers
Cares not to come up any higher
But rather get you down in the hole
That he's in.

But I mean no harm nor put fault
On anyone that lives in a vault
But it's alright, Ma, if I can't please him.

Old lady judges watch people in pairs
Limited in sex, they dare
To push fake morals, insult and stare
While money doesn't talk, it swears
Obscenity, who really cares
Propaganda, all is phony.

While them that defend what they cannot see
With a killer's pride, security
It blows the minds most bitterly
For them that think death's honesty
Won't fall upon them naturally
Life sometimes
Must get lonely.

My eyes collide head-on with stuffed graveyards
False gods, I scuff
At pettiness which plays so rough
Walk upside-down inside handcuffs
Kick my legs to crash it off
Say okay, I have had enough
What else can you show me?

And if my thought-dreams could be seen
They'd probably put my head in a guillotine
But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only.

I emphasize a piece of that, Eric Cheered after I did. I did my own turn, a bit punky a bit new wave a bit blues. A Lot of me.

The crowd liked it. Well why not, he is the master of words after all. I finished off with 3 more Dylan songs. not as easily known, Ones that are not played on the radio usually. Baby Let Me Follow You Down, Dink's Song, and Tough Mama.

It was all received very well. This was my best set yet, people were cheering that did not come just for that purpose.

I was on a serious high from life that night.

Eric and the boys and I walked outside, talking laughing and just enjoying life when I saw him, across the street. I could barely tell Eric when I was already crossing the street towards him. I could hear the conversation as I got closer.

"Hey, my name is Kim Elliot."

All of a sudden I see lights, hear car horns and am pulled backwards fast.

"Hey!" I screamed.

Eric started yelling at me in a few languages before he got to English. "Girl you almost got smushed, than where would Freedom be? Huh? You girl need to keep yourself alive if she is to have a chance."

"It's him!"


"Kim Elliot!"

"Who is she?"

"He, the guy. THE GUY!"

"The guy is named a girls name?"

"No it's a guy's name." Eric just looked at me. "Di you not read, o.k. see the movie Kim? Kipling? Anyone?"

A sea of blank stairs.

" Never mind" I say. "The guy is right over there..." I pointed across the street, but he wasn't there.

"O.k. honey, what ever you say. " one of the boys said.

"Come on, one of you had to see him?"

They all nodded No.

"Maybe he's a ghost, you might be psychic. Gifted. That is totally bitchin! Do me next."

I couldn't tell if Eric was kidding or not.

"Not with a 10 foot pole!"

I walked the mile home. I know his name. Kim. His name is Kim.

Friday, 19 June 2009

ugly p 24

Ah, life with Miles.

What can I say?

It's been over a month.

He slipped into your apartment is my apartment routine real quick. And I am man you are woman, therefor I lay about with my new friends and you cook and clean for us, and for Christ sakes keep that brat quite when we are smoking our joints.

All of this will "I love you, babe." Every now and than.

He had a grand plan to live off the state while he went to school. He seriously had the plan of me popping out a few more babies so I could get more money. Every time we had sex he would say, "Take my seed. Receive my seed. Woman's job is to take the seed ." Later he would say it was just "sex talk". I went down to the clinic after the first night of that and got on the pill. There was no way I was going to have baby after baby. I had plans. I love my Freedom, but I have plans.

I could not live of the state effectively with Freedom. I still needed to ply my trade in the Boston commons or near subways or at the financial district. The tourist in summer and the businessmen rich and on cocaine were the best tippers. One guy in a suit and a car salesman's smile gave me a 50 dollar bill because my song reminded him of his first girlfriend. How Donovan's Atlantis reminded him of an old girlfriend I do not know, but I was happy to have the money.

When I had good days, I squirrelled the extra away. Miles had an idea how much I made on an average day and so he expected it when I got home. You see the first week he moved in he did everything with me, including the sidewalk gigs. He held Freedom and I sang. Now he counts on the money I do laundry and by diapers with for him and his friends to get drunk or high. I convinced him the diapers were needed and laundry still needed to be done.

Some how he thought it was my duty to do his too. Never giving me money for laundry or detergent, nor did he even carry the laundry to and fro. He said "I'll watch the baby so you can have time to yourself. See you in an hour, no later than two, I can't watch her all day. "

You know I realized after 3 weeks, I realize he never calls her by her name, it is always ways, the brat, the baby, the squirt, your child, etc, but never Freedom.

He watched her while I did my sidewalk gigs. Now I could go out every day, not just on weekend when Sandra and Carol used to come by. Since Miles moved in they don't come by no more. He never liked them anyways. He would say "Being around those dikes will turn the baby into a carpet muncher." Though he had no problem with my gay men friends. As long as they didn't hang around him and his friends.

One of the things I looked forward to was being able to see them. On different days we would do the same areas. My closet buddy is Eric Star. He is Micmac. He actually had an English last name or French But he dropped it saying it was to white and he was red outside and rainbow inside but not white. It was an Indian joke I didn't get for a few weeks after I meet him.

Eric I would see a few times a week. He would juggle and sing and ride a unicycle, he said he learned from some French circus troupe up in Canada. He was fun to watch. He Was mostly joy bundled up in a hug. But under there was pain.

Oh , Eric had friends. The gay men all seemed to know each other. One had a small club. Eric convinced him to let me play the club one night a week. I would open for a local favorite like Til Tuesday. I got to know more musicians in the town. Soon people liked me too. I introduced the young punk crowd to punk with some soul, blues and anything else I felt like playing. I played with a harder edge in the club, then I did on the streets.

Before I went on the first time, Miles made me wear theater makeup to cover my wings. He said people would think I was a freak and never hear my music. I believed him. On the street people expect the street performers to be , well not normal in a lot of ways.

Eric always complained about me wearing the make up. I told him all people who go on stage where a mask of some sorts. He asked me if I was Seneca.

"What's Seneca?"

"Iroquois. Butterfly, They have that false face society, always wearing masks, serious juju stuff. But girl you are doing just the opposite, you cover your power up, didn't the old Navajo grand mother tell you about it when she named you? "

This was a talking to I got almost every time I wore it on stage , which was every time I went on stage. He came down to just calling me False Face, when I was going on stage.

At least I can play my music, make some music, have someone watch Freedom while I did so. Even if Miles didn't know how much I really made.

One day I was in the park with Eric setting up. I saw this young man. He Was playing a steel drum and all sorts of instruments for Africa. He is fun of sunshine, his skin so beautiful, his smile like the the rainbow in the sky when it is still dark menacing clouds. He head full of small braids that fly around like a mane when he swings when he really gets a rhythm going. He becomes part of his music.

"Who's he?" I said to Eric.

"Who's who, bub-la?"

"Yonder young man?" I motion with my head. As I am not looking at him now.

"He good looking?"

"Hell, yeah, can't you see?"

I turned to look and he was gone. He must of left as I was trying to nonchalontly get Eric to look. A old man in his place on the bench now.

"Girl, I didn't know you had a grandpa fetish, but anything would be better than that boy you got at home. When you going to take out that trash anyway?" Oh Eric has his way of saying thing no-one else could get aways with.

I look at him hard.

"Hey just telling it as it is, nothing you don't know, girlfriend"

"Where did he go?"


"The Bob Marley look alike that was over there."

"You'll find him some day if it was meant to be. There are only so many places in the city you can hide, as my last lover." Eric laughs at his own joke.

"What if I don't?"

"Trust in the universe, honey, it always provides, just usually not when we want it to. What was he doing?"

"Playing drums and stuff."

"Ah than you will see him again as long as Miles still watches that precious little jewel of yours. He will be around. Fresh meat on the common, people." Eric says while waving about.

"It's not like that."

"than how is it like."

"It's something inside."

"You didn't say anything to him yet, and vice verse, you sure it isn't something stirring inside you?"

"Not like that."

"It's always like that."

"Not always. Something. Some connection. Like I have seen him before, but I never did."

"I forget how young you are sometimes." Eric said while siting on a bench.

"Thanks, pull the older and wiser card out, you know that will only get you kicked."

"No, girl, Butterfly, come sit with me for a few minutes before we start." He pats the bench next to him.

I sit down next to him and await his wisdom.

"You saw one of your kind, I suspect. You are not the only one of your kind in the world. Oh , don't get me wrong child, you are one unique creature, endangered for sure, but not to extension, you are not alone."

"What are you talking about?"

"You never noticed you are different, you don't fit in? I noticed that about me when I was just a little boy. I new back on the rez, the other boys were not like me. Endangered spices, I am. But in the city, there are for more people like me, not as much as these others." He wave his arm as if to point to all the people around us. "Not that one over there, he's a boy like me, and she's a boy like me, too."

"We are all different."

"Yes, but some of use are more different than others. And those of us who are endangered species have to stick to get together.We aren't always the same, yo think the boys down here in Boston understand what it was like growing up on the res? No. But we do understand a lot more about growing up knowing we were not like what our fathers wanted from their sons? "

"I'm not gay."

"Nope, there are more of us than there are of you. But you stick with us and we with you. Once, I was told, people excepted people, no endangered species, we were all the same and different and it was o.k., but that was long before the French and English and Dutch and Spanish came here. Now peoples they exclude, it's always us and them. So now us endangered species , we got to stick together to survive."

"What does this have to do with the man,I don't think he was one of the boys. "

"You saw one of your kind, you could feel it down to your soul. You now know, you now know."

"Know what?"

"You are not alone. Have you not been listening? You have found another one of what ever you are. I recognized it on your face, your voice, I remember when I first found one of my kind, it was the same way."

"So what are you saying, I am not alone, but I lost him pretty quick."

"You'll find each other again, if it meant to be. Good morning morning glory."

"Good Morning, dude your clock is off it is afternoon."

"Morning has broken for you, my love, time to whip the sleep out of your eyes and let the sun shine in, you have just become enlightened to a universal truth... now go play while there is money to be made. "

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Musical Interlude

Life in a city.

Do you remember the drug of choice in the 80's?

Gender bending all the rage with the cool kids. But do you want to hurt me would have been too easy a choice.

This is littler known group.

Monday, 15 June 2009

ugly 23

I love how babies at 2 months old will start to smile at you every morning and every opportunity they have just because they know how much you like it.

Oh how Freedom loves to smile.

You know she got these dimples and this wide full of joy way of smiling that makes me forget almost anything. It is so wide it fills all of this small 3 room apartment.

I open the shades to the small place every morning. It is part of and old Victorian. It always seems like it would have been the maid's quarters. How many a young woman my age would have been living here over the years looking over the same streets.

The big city. I can get used to this, something always to do.

Like the Troggs said "Boston your my town."

You might wonder how I got here 2 months after the hospital room. Well the quick answer would be welfare.

But there are no real quick answers in life.

Remember how I would go to town to go shopping with Carol and Sandra when I was preggers with the little pumpkin pie? Well, the first time they took me I saw a man singing in the park and people would give him money in his guitar case. Just for singing and playing. Can you believe that.

The next time we went I brought my guitar and played on the sidewalk. I played the blues. Blues is always something best heard live. They liked it. I always got some money. I got more and more popular. People sometimes ran to pay phones to call their friends to come hear me play. As my belly got larger I got sympathy money on top of it. When all was said and done and Freedom was coming into the world I had saved up $3,459.76. Now that may not sound like a lot in the scream of things but it was a great deal for me. It was enough for first last a deposit. With some left over for second hand furniture and to get on the roles of Massachusetts great welfare system.

Being a young woman with a baby I needed a plan. I had no man to provide for us. So I simply decided I could use some help.

When Granny heard I decided to keep the baby she said "Well, you want to make grown up decisions, have fun being a grown up int the world. Write when you can support yourself. Don't be calling here for any hand outs. We Are not a charity."

And that was all she hung up the phone.

Disowned, I think they call it when your family aren't your family any more. You would think I would care more. It was honestly a relief. I had no clue where I was going, I just knew where I didn't want to go. That was easier than I thought. I really didn't want those people helping raise Freedom anyway.

Sandra and Carol helped find me this apartment. They helped me get on welfare.They helped me enroll in GED classes. They told me "This is not an option, you are getting your GED!" They told me it was so I could enrol in college and start using my brains for good. I did promise them. During the weekends one or the other will visit usually. They will watch Freedom while I do homework or go play in the park for my extra money.

If anyone things welfare is a free ride they are dead wrong. They give you just enough, not enough and barley enough.I don;t know where they think I could live off what they give me, but I just pay my rent with it. My bills are always a play catch up. The lady who explained it to me told me I should spend no more than a third on rent. I asked her where do you live for 300$ a month with a baby. She showed me housing projects in Dorchester. I would hear guns go off, but I know there ere no deer int her parts and it was armed hunting humans. I would rather beg for money than raise Freedom there. But I don't beg, I sing, I sing for our survival.

That is what it is survival. It comes when you don't have enough for too long so you do what you have to just to survive. This is what welfare is like. I know the only way out is to go to college so I can get a good job for me and my child. I sing always.

So this morning I bring the smiling little one to be changed. I bath her and put her in a pretty dress Sandra bought her.

The think about Boston it is so, well Irish in a way. The music, the people, the pubs. I wanted to practice a song I heard long ago for the next time I went to the park.

Oh you know I changed it a little bit as I sat and sang it to Freedom.

As I was goin over the cork and smokey mountains
I saw captain farrell and his money he was countin
I first produced my pistol and then produced my rapier
I said stand and deliver or the devil he may take ya

Musha ring dum a doo dum a da
Whack for my daddy-o
Whack for my daddy-o
Theres whiskey in the jar-o

I took all of his money and it was a pretty penny
I took all of his money and I brought it home to Miles
He swore that hed love me, never would he leave me
But the devil take that man for you know he tricked me easy

Being drunk and weary I went to Miles' chamber
Takin my money with me and I never knew the danger
For about six or maybe seven in walked captain farrell
I jumped up, fired off my pistols and I shot him with both barrels

Now some women like the fishin and some women like the fowlin
And some women like ta hear a cannon ball a roarin
Me I like sleepin specially in my Miles' chamber
But here I am in prison, here I am with a ball and chain yeah

I started tolaugh tomyself as Freedom smiled on ather mother singing the silly song.

Along comes a wrapping on my door.

Stange enough I was expecting no-one.

I walked over, peeked out of the spyhole. Andas they say, "as Ilive a breath" there stood Miles. Almost 1 year after I left Kentukey.

I opned the door.

He stood there with a great big old smile. Damn she has his smile.

"Hey Blue's Lady! I heard you decide to keep the little squirt I'm going top school around here next year , thought I would look you and my baby up."

He stood there smiling. Like nothing happend. His baby! His baby! Where was he past the pleasure?!

I started to slam the door shut, he stopped it with his foot. "Hey, we are both older and wiser, eh." He said.

"Oh, I got older and wiser real fast, and what life changing experiences made you older and wiser?"

"Hey graduated High School. And somewhere out there was a id of mine.Hey that weighs on a guys mind."

"Is that more or less heavy than being a pregnant girl that her lover denies?" I looked at him wishing he could feel all the pain he caused me.

He walked in the door and grabbed my head gently and kissed me quick.

Old feelings stirred.

Thoughts of a family stirred.

Thought of a normal life for Freedom flooded my head.

Thoughts of a wedding.

Thoughts of a house.

Thoughts of more children , brothers and sisters for my Freedom.

Thoughts of everything but me.

I kissed him back.

He looked at me. "I heard you named it something hippieish." He brought in 3 bags. "It's about time we play house. See if this could work. Where is your t.v.? " He sat down on my coach.

There was no t.v., it wasn't in the welfare budget.

"Why don't you get a job and buy one for us?" I looked at him head cocked.

"I heard you were on welfare, don't they give you money for that stuff up here? Welfare mothers get cadillacs. Maybe we don't have enough kids yet." He said with a smile "What's for breakfast, mama?"

And that is how he moved in with me in my little apartment in Boston.